Texas State adds FAQs to Clery Act program review

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Texas State adds FAQs to Clery Act program review

Star File Photo 
Photo by Jakob Rodriguez

Star File Photo
Photo by Jakob Rodriguez

Star File Photo
Photo by Jakob Rodriguez

Star File Photo
Photo by Jakob Rodriguez

Jakob Rodriguez, Editor-In-Chief

Texas State has added a list of frequently asked questions in regards to the Department of Education’s current Clery Act Compliance Division Program review.

The announcement from University President Denise M. Trauth (Nov. 7), followed the DOE’s announcement of the off-site review. Annually, institutions participating in the Federal Student Aid program must disclose campus security policy and crime statistics, a process outlined in the Clery Act.

According to administrators, Texas State has been working with the Department of Education since May 2019 to correct deficiencies identified in the university’s prior Annual Security Reports.

The peer review team from the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators, who were on campus Aug. 12-15, 2018, indicated the first concern for Clery compliance at Texas State. In August 2019, Texas State was advised by the Department of Education to revise the 2016 and 2017 crime statistics numbers.

According to university officials the new leadership and administrators immediately began to address deficiencies in the reporting of Clery offenses.

The revision of previous numbers from 2016 and 2017 mandated by the DOE was conducted by Texas State staff members revisiting police reports from the aforementioned two years and ensuring reports are classified correctly as a part of a reported “university-wide process.” According to a university press release, this process worked to ensure accurate crime statistics moving forward.

How did the misreported crime statistics happen?

The reporting software used previously by the UPD prior to 2018 contributed to the

misreporting. It was designed for municipalities, instead of higher education institutions.

UPD was taking the reports and the reports were being submitted to the record

management system, but the system was not calculating them correctly.

There was a lack of communication between the various university offices responsible

for providing and reporting Clery Act data. That has since been resolved with the

internal Clery Compliance Committee established in March 2019 by Chief Clouse. The

group meets monthly to review reports and Clery crime statistics.

Former UPD leadership was not experienced in Higher Education or Clery Act

compliance, but this was addressed by the hiring of Chief Laurie Clouse in February

2019. She has extensive experience in university law enforcement and Clery Act

compliance.

What has TXST done to address Clery Compliance?

Since February 2019, the university has taken specific actions to address Clery

compliance, including hiring University Police Chief Laurie Clouse who has an extensive

background in university law enforcement and Clery compliance.

Chief Clouse formed an internal interdisciplinary Clery Compliance Committee which

first met on March 6, 2019 and continues to meet monthly to update and maintain ASR

crime statistics reporting information.

The university joined the national Clery Center which helps identify best practices and

provides an external review of the university’s ASR.

The university is working with Margolis Healy, a nationally known Clery consultant that

has advised other universities on similar Clery program reviews.

The university is hiring two full-time positions, a Director of Institutional Compliance,

and a Clery Act Compliance Coordinator to support our on-going efforts.

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